A 14-year-old New Jersey high school student took her own life days after a disturbing video was posted online that showed a group of girls punching and kicking her in a high school hallway. Adriana Kuch who was recently bullied at Central Regional High School in New Jersey's Berkeley Township was found dead two days later at her home on February 1.
Kuch's father believes that her suicide was triggered by the longtime bullying. The police too now believe that bullying played a major role in fueling Kuch's suicide. An investigation has been launched. The 20-second video clip that shows the teen being aggressively bullied has since gone viral.
Brutally Attacked in School
Kuch took her life just two days after the disturbing video posted online showed her being attacked by a group of girls in her school. The disturbing video captures several students assaulting Kuch with water bottles as she walked with her boyfriend along a school hallway, according to Patch.
"That's what you get, you stupid a— b—!" one of the students is heard yelling in the 20-second clip that the local news outlet viewed.
According to ABC 7, the attackers can be seen punching, kicking, and yanking Adriana's hair as others watch and laugh.
Kuch, 14, "blacked out" after being "smashed in the face three times with a water bottle," her devasted father, Michael Kuch, said. He was forced to take his daughter, who was covered in blood, to the police station to file a report as the school refused to do so.
"They think it's fun to attack people and take videos and post them," Adriana's devastated dad, Michael Kuch, told the station.
"Getting hit with a water bottle didn't hurt Adriana, what hurt her was the embarrassment and humiliation, they just kept coming at her," he said.
"My daughter actually blacks out and they don't call an ambulance, they take her to the nurse's office," Kuch told ABC 7, adding Adriana had "never been in a fight before, she's 98 pounds, 5-2 and she loves everybody."
According to News 12 New Jersey, three have been charged with third-degree assault and a fourth has been charged with disorderly behavior. Additionally, they were all expelled from school.
However, Kuch's family is now suing the school for what they claim was a failure to act after the viral assault of their daughter.
Punished But Late
Kuch was a student at Central Regional High School in Bayville, where her family moved seven years ago after being forced to relocate numerous times due to her father's military service as an Army Airborne paratrooper.
According to an obituary posted online, Kuch "adored all animals, she helped children with special needs, she loved jogging with her brothers and was a true nature lover.
"Adriana also enjoyed her walks in the woods, skateboarding, riding dune buggies and dirt bikes," it reads.
Triantafillos Parlapanides, superintendent of schools, told News 12 New Jersey that school rules prevented police from being notified after the incident.
"I don't believe a police report was done. We normally just suspend. If a parent wants to press charges, they can with the police," he said, adding, "We're not going to double-whammy a kid where they are suspended and then police charges as well."
"A kid is assaulted with a weapon at school, and their policy is not to call the police or file a report?" the teen's father was appalled by the school's response, telling NBC New York.
Michael Kuch uploaded photos of the assault to Facebook.
"These 4 girls planned and executed an attack. If you watch the videos I have, they are laughing while talking about what they are going to do," he wrote, adding he "had to take my daughter covered in blood to the local police station."
"If the school contacted the police and filed a report and conducted an investigation, these videos could have been discovered immediately," he wrote.
"I want the entire world to know what these animals did to my daughter. I will not sleep until their family has to watch them stand in front of a judge and plead guilty," he added.
In addition to her father, Michael, and stepmother, Sarah, Adriana also leaves behind eight siblings. Her mother, Brandy, predeceased her.
Her family is all now demanding justice from the educational system after alleging that it did not do enough to safeguard the adolescent girl.
The district says there were crisis counselors accessible and highlighted Adriana's death in a notice on its website, but students claim they were not individually made aware of that.
"Nobody was supposed to know Adriana killed herself," student Lance Jones told the outlet, adding that word spread about the tragedy.
Kuch, according to students and parents, was not the only target of bullying. A student was attacked in the school cafeteria last April, and she sustained an injury that prevented her from being able to defend herself, the student's mother told Patch.
Others who heard these stories said the district did nothing to stop the bullying of them or people they knew.